Syracuse Sports Radio Host Brent Axe Fired For Being Too Negative Just a Day After It Was Announced The Company's Part Owner Jim Boeheim Would Be Appearing On The Station Multiple Times Over The Next Year
Syracuse.com— ESPN Radio Syracuse personality Brent Axe was told Sunday that his “On the Block with Brent Axe” radio show is being taken off the air and he is no longer an employee of Galaxy Media Partners.
Galaxy President and CEO Ed Levine said he fired Axe because he believes the content of Axe’s show had become too negative toward Syracuse University sports.
Axe said Levine informed him in a phone call on Sunday afternoon. The firing is immediate.
Criticizing Jim Boeheim in the city of Syracuse has always been something met with trepidation. If you dare to challenge him you're walking a tight rope. Today it was confirmed to all that Syracuse University is basically state run media.
Brent Axe has long been a media personality for Syracuse sports talk and probably is the best at what he does in the area. Yesterday he was fired by ESPN Radio Syracuse for being too negative about the basketball team and Jim Boeheim. That's not speculation either, Galaxy Media Partners CEO and President Ed Levine confirmed it here!
“I had a problem with the content of the show,” Levine said. “I’m an SU fan. I’m sorry, but I bleed Orange. I’m not going to apologize for that, and I think a fair reading of the Orange is appropriate. I understand (Galaxy has) a business relationship (with Syracuse), that Coach (Jim) Boeheim and I are personal friends and he’s an investor in my company. I understand and acknowledge all of that. We’ve called it pretty fair, and I would argue we’ve been tough on SU when the on-field or off-field events warrant it. I just think over the past six months it took a different tone and became overly dark and negative. I don’t think that’s what Syracuse fans want to hear.”
“Brent is a full-time employee of Syracuse.com,” Levine said. “I believe Syracuse.com has an agenda in regards to Syracuse University. I don’t know what that agenda is, but that agenda was manifesting itself on our airwaves. We have no agenda. We’re in business with Syracuse University, but we call it straight down the line. What I said to Brent was I wish he covered Syracuse University with the same affection that he covered the Buffalo Bills.”
WILD to say all of that out loud. Literally admitting Boeheim is in your pocket and controlling what is said about him. How are you gonna say you call it straight down the line when you're firing a dude who was doing exactly that. That's actually insane. Saying anything positive about the program the last few years would simply be a lie. What's he supposed to say when the team gives up 90+ points in three straight games and gets their doors blown off at home by a terrible Georgia Tech team in what was maybe their worst loss in years? They were horrific all year and have been miserable for quite some time. If you weren't being negative you were lying to everyone's faces. Based on this I think I'd be in jail if I was working on campus talking about the state of the basketball program.
A 2018 FCC filing listed Boeheim among a group of investors who were buying 21 percent of Galaxy.
Jim has always had his spats with the media, and those became more and more frequent recently as he drove the program down to the bottom of the ocean. He would combat anyone who questioned his tactics and/or the state of the program. One consistent local voice who refused to put up with the bullshit was Brent Axe. Jim knew it too.
Boeheim took aim at Axe in a comment to ESPN’s Pete Thamel in February, saying the only consistent critic he heard this season was a “local talk show host.”
The crazy thing is that this happenned just days after Boeheim stepped down/resigned/was fired. Axe was proven correct that a major change had to be made. The only issue? Jim promptly agreed to appear on the company's radio stations multiple times over the next year. Considering he's an investor as well, you connect the dots.
The day before Levine told Axe that he’d been fired, the Galaxy president posted on Facebook that Boeheim will be appearing on multiple Galaxy Media radio stations over the next year.
If anything Boeheim should have welcomed the conversation and continued the rivalry. Sad.
Thankfully Axe is still a full-time employee over at Syracuse.com I believe. I wonder if he decides to go scorched Earth here or swallows his pride. Please be the former.
P.S. Gotta think Bill Simmons and the Syracuse AD hate each other from their ESPN days. Need to hear the story behind all that.